peppered moth

noun

Definition of peppered moth

: a European geometrid moth (Biston betularia) that typically has white wings with small black specks but also occurs as a solid black form especially in areas where the air is heavily polluted by industry

First Known Use of peppered moth

1766

in the meaning defined above

See Words from the same year
NEW! Time Traveler

Learn More about peppered moth


Seen and Heard

What made you want to look up peppered moth? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).

Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!

WORD OF THE DAY

widely and unfavorably known

Get Word of the Day daily email!

Test Your Vocabulary

Words for Summer: A Quiz

  • a-closeup-of-a-sunflower
  • Which of the following words means “of or relating to summer”?
How Strong Is Your Vocabulary?

Test your vocabulary with our 10-question quiz!

TAKE THE QUIZ
Citation

Test Your Knowledge - and learn some interesting things along the way.

TAKE THE QUIZ

Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!